Girls Basketball: Lowell starts season with a bang, upsets Sacred Heart

Lowell guard Angie Ng (right) locks down a Sacred Heart ball-handler on Tuesday at Lowell High School. (Photo by Eric Luis)

By Josh Levine

In a battle of two of the top girls basketball teams in San Francisco, Lowell High School held visiting Sacred Heart Cathedral to just two points in the third quarter en route to a 40-36 upset win on Tuesday.

Sophomore Kelly Wong led the way for the Cardinals (1-0) in their season opener with 15 points. Wong and the Lowell bench scored 22 of the team’s 40 points.

Lowell's Kelly Eshima (right) drives past a Sacred Heart defender on Tuesday at Lowell High School. (Photo by Eric Luis)

“I just tried to keep hustling out there and focus on our defense,” Wong said. “When our defense is going, everything else just flows. We wanted to finish strong out there even though we were getting tired. We needed to push through and we did that.”

After trailing 22-14 at the half, that Lowell defense held to the Irish (0-1) nearly scoreless in the third quarter and gave the Cardinals a 31-24 lead heading in to the fourth quarter.

“We came out in the third quarter and just missed some shots,” said Sacred Heart head coach Mike Carey. “We missed a lay up, a jumper and a three. Our go to person [point guard GeAnna Summers-Luaulu] is on crutches right now with an ankle injury. We looked at each other for the spark, and when a couple shots fell for Lowell, we fell behind.”

Summers-Luaulu is expected to have an MRI on her ankle on Wednesday and could be available to play soon.

Even though the game is just the first of the season for each team, any time an Academic Athletic Association team takes down a West Catholic Athletic League squad, it has an impact. Still, Carey was happy to get a game against tough opponent early in the year.

“There is a reason every year we schedule a game with them,” Carey said. “They have always been a great program ever since I coached [at] Mercy. They are a great team and we are still learning. Our league is tough, but we will learn and preseason games like this prep us for that.”

Scoring Leaders

Lowell
Kelly Wong — 15
Katarina Lum — 6
Jillian Doherty — 5
Kelly Eshima — 4
Taylor Sui — 2

Sacred Heart Cathedal
Amanda Vega — 9
Briannah Smith — 7
Ann Marie Sequeira — 6
Ashley Gainer — 5
Kayla Coloyan — 4

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58 Comments

  1. WCAL Fan says:

    What happened Irish.

  2. GCJ 01 says:

    Great job Lowell! You beat a good SHC team!

  3. anonymous says:

    anybody knows what happened to Kai Ree Howard of Sacred Heart

    • SHC Alum says:

      She’s on JV, but her and maybe the tall girl, I think her name is Asante, should both be on Varsity.

      • Anonymous says:

        Kayre-Howard is a good player but needs to be a more of a team player to be able to play at the varsity level. The big girl will be fine on JV’s where she can work on her game. Everyone needs to cut Coach Carey some slack, he knows what he’s doing. Go Irish!

        • BALL HARD says:

          @Anonymous u r sooo right Kai Ree is a great player.I been watching her 4 a long time. i knew she was goin to grow , 2 be a great player since she was n elementary. I was at the game last nigh, she had 4 point ,8asst,5 steals, that wha u call a teams player, she had lots of opportunities to score but she pass the ball 2 her teammates.so if u knew basketball u would of known that’s a good team player,she’s a leader. she also have skills n talent,, Me personally i think her n another guard on the JV should of made varsity, and 2 other girls also 4 the post position. That would of really help the varsity teams.GOOD LUCK IRISH

    • Hoops fan says:

      Kai Ree Howard is on the SH JV team

  4. Fan says:

    SHC will have to find a compliment player for Summers-Luaulu if they don’t want teams to double up on her. The league is to tough to not have another scorer. That’s what made those teams from the past so good because they had so many options for people to score and did not always have that one person scoring a lot per game to carry them. Even though she is hurt right now this is a good time for others to step up and gain valuable experience for league play.

  5. Ari Gold says:

    Mike Carey coached a CCS Div 3 championship team last year. A team that did not have the talent that it has been used to the last 10 years. For some reason I have a bad feeling that he’s not getting the credit he deserves and is unfairly compared to the success of his predecessor, Harrigan. Even though he won CCS last year, I feel unhappy alumni are out there who dont like his coaching style, his player management, his ability to attract the talent that SH is used to getting. I dont know Mike Carey, but I just know hes not getting a fair shake and probably wont ever. If he wins another CCS title, how can anyone complain? But another note, there should be no circumstance where SH loses to Lowell. Sure your best player is injured and on the bench but the strength of WCAL teams is talent and depth and if you cant beat a AAA team even if your best player is on the bench, that doesnt bode well.

    • ARHS Stats says:

      Lowell has one of the better San Francisco Girls basketball teams year after year.

      The Only two girls teams that usually are ranked higher than Lowell, that are in San Francisco, are Saint Ignatius and Sacred Heart Cathedral.

      • Ari Gold says:

        Pat, I think 9/10, SH girls beats Lowell girls, especially if you have a healthy and playing GeAnna Summers-Luaulu. So that 1/10 for Lowell happened yesterday.

    • Fan says:

      You are probably right about Carey and him not getting the credit. You know when a program has success for many years and then there is a change of the guard, there is going to be scrunity favorable and unfavorable. Plus having this site, whereas before people talked amongst their friends, you get a lot more people who can voice their opinion, good and bad.

    • Don L. says:

      Ari,

      I don’t know how often you watch Lowell play, but this year’s squad seems to be MUCH better than I remember from some of the more recent years. SHC may be “down” but Lowell still had to score the buckets and earn the win. I think they deserve more credit that you are giving them.

      As a spectator at the game last night, if Lowell actually made some of their inside shots early, SHC might have been down early instead of being up at halftime. Overall, I don’t think Lowell played their best game as their BIGS were off. THeir best big player (Lorna) played poorly. Lowell rotated among three other big girls who had their roles but didn’t exactly have a huge impact on offense.

      But it was Lowell guards and their defense that really frustrated SHC. Lowell’s guards were able to penetrate and get layups (though outside shooting, normally a Lowell strength was not there). But again, that’s a bit of a change for Lowell. They usually jack up a lot of threes but with SHC contesting defensively, they went to the rack instead.

      Lowell was also pressing, double teaming and causing some trouble on the defensive end. SHC seemed frustrated until the latter moments of the 4th quarter when they finally started driving and kicking to the open three point shooters. SHC knocked down a few shots that closed the gap as Lowell was up double digits.

      Feel free to blame SHC for “not playing to their potential” and letting an AAA team beat them. But let’s give credit to Lowell as well. It’s not like SHC just let them walk into the lane for layups.

    • just bein me says:

      i never. seen shcp with just 1 good player. when i went there they had a whole team of player that can do lots of stuff n get lot’s of win. sh was 33-0 when i was there. i guess there were better coachin n staff then.harrigan pick his team by skills n talent. sh need to start doin that again.now sh is 16-13. u suppose to stay on top not fall.sh have too much good talent up there . he need to learn how to pick by talent n skills n then u will have a winnin teams. let’s ge it together shcp.

  6. SHC alum says:

    Get it together sh

  7. Ari Gold says:

    From experience, losing to Lowell or any AAA will mean coach’s scorn next practice. I was on a SO-FR football team and we were either losing by 7 or tied at halftime to Lowell and Coach Phil Freed ripped us all a new one in the locker room. There was going to be hell to pay next practice if we didnt win that game. We ended up winning but that was some pretty scary stuff coming from Coach Freed. The lesson learned here is you better not lose to a AAA team.

    • AAA Fan says:

      Maybe just once Ari, you could just say “Well played Lowell. It was an entertaining contest. We’ll get you next time.” It would make everyone have more respect for you.

      You motive for commenting isn’t to make all the AAA athletes feel poorly about their league, is it?

      • GCJ 01 says:

        AAA Fan: Yes, that’s Ari Gold’s motive. That’s why I’ve been defending our league against people like him. As long as us AAA fans/alum/supporters stick together, the rest of the can kiss our…..

    • GCJ 01 says:

      I doubt that was the message. However, I do find it funny that you just basically admitted that your coach had to scare you in order for your team to win.

  8. So tired of the phoney..... says:

    Coach Carey is trying to do the best he can. Perhaps the team didn’t do so well because so much time was thrown away with all the “drama” that kicked off the SH season? Funny how folks show up at the games just to talk smack about the girls’. I don’t understand why you hate on this team so much? If this team is so whack, why come??? Stay home, keep your mouth shut, you don’t go to the school no more! Would of, could of, should of, but reality is YOU AIN’T, so keep it moving. You hate on the girls, hate on the coach, hate on the school, yet you show up??? Grow up.

    • Irish 87 says:

      Sadly I agree. I couldn’t believe how much drama there was with the Varsity team this year. And watching the game against Lowell there was definitely some chemistry issues. Hopefully, Carey can fix all those things and have the girls work as a unit. I still think this team can be competitive but they need to ignore all the hate and drama and get to work. Lets go IRISH!

    • just bein me says:

      i graduated in 2008. coach harrigan had this team on top. what happen. mr carey don’t no what he’s doin lots of ppl agree. @87 i don’t agree u must have daughter that made that team. sh never had a team like that.a real coach n scout r goin to pick their player by skills n talent. he doesn’t do that he picks his player cause of the good relationship he his with their parent n that’s not right. lots ppl agree on that too!! Let ‘s be real !!!it’s 2 guard n to post player should of been on that team.mr carey was right by coach harrigan side and didn’t learn not.sh going to lose lot s of money. u do the math 5 x 15,000. due to the coachin and staff, n of not bein fare,this is life u should teach u kids how to be strong n keep standin.that’s all ya’ll worryin about is the drama, that’s over..that’s just an excause. noe if a real took over half them girls wouldn’t be on the teams. they do it n college n the wnba n the nba. talkin alot of mess the crowd. so sthey better get use to it cause the season just start.faucity the regent and the community better move quickly n get a new coach so sh can be on top again.LET”S GO IRISH

      • Kezar for Keeps says:

        Are you sure you graduated? I would think you should be able to put together a coherent sentence to graduate.

        • GCJ 01 says:

          Kezar: Again, you catch people who make horrible grammatical and sentence structure errors. I love it!

          On a side note, I do not know why everyone is making excuses as to why SHC lost to Lowell. The better team won….deal with it! SHC is a great team. Whatever issues they are having I’m pretty sure it will be dealt with and everyone can move on from it.

          • 28point5 says:

            Aside from all the comments on here, just wanna give a shout out to Lorna Tu’ufuli (Lowell), Amanda Vega, Jerrieza Enriquez, Bri Smith & Ashley Gainer (SHCP). You all played a great game. ‘Nuff said!

      • Anonymous says:

        I also agree with this comment. Yes, the girls on the team are good, but they would be even better if Coach Carey was smart about his decision in building his team. Several juniors who have insane talent did not make the team and one of them is the best rebounder in the city. The same goes for some of the sophomores who have just as much talent as GeAnna Summers. Coach Carey would gain more respect if he picked his team based on skill instead of relationships and favoritism. Congrats to Lowell for the win and I hope the Irish will become stronger as a team.

        • Anonymous says:

          Blood is thicker than water as the saying goes! It happens in every school, any sport. So I just wish the varsiy and even the JV girls of
          SH good luck and just play your hearts out! Oops! also the freshmen
          Girls!!

    • Hoops fan says:

      I also strongly AGREE with this comment!

    • sports time says:

      Well said So tired of the phoney’s. If you don’t want to cheer the kids on then stay home and cut the drama out already. Let the coach do his job and cheer the kids on period. The kids work hard so give them a break and stay positive. Go Irish!!

  9. GCJ 01 says:

    Seeing how SHC was 2nd in the last poll and Lowell was 3rd, I’m guessing these two will switch places in the next polls JB?

  10. B -Baller 2 says:

    How many girls were cut from the varsity?

    • IRISH FAN says:

      I think about seven girls … But four of the girls would have made a big difference on that varsity team. two JV point guards kairee and alynna would have been a good fit for the team . but kayla who is on the vars team is also good … and two post Lynette & Tyana we’re cut who would have helped a lot because Lynette was able to score .. and tyana was a strong rebounder …. I may not know the girlies but I watched plenty of the games last year …. GOODLUCK WITH YOUR SEASON IRISH !! KEEP WORKING

  11. Don L. says:

    Alright – this thread’s gone on long enough but my last comments:

    1.
    Talent and Skill does not make a good team all by itself. Chemistry does play a factor in all of this. All coaches have a philosophy developed over the years and certain players fit that philosophy than others. Respect Coach Carey’s decisions on players. Think about it this way. Miami had three stars and Dallas one star plus a lot of role players. Which team ended up winning the NBA title?

    2.
    All this complaining about Coach Carey leaving some talented players at the JV or Frosh level is interesting. Let’s say these talented JV players are as good as advertised, at least SHC HAS SOME CHOICES!

    Lowell, Lincoln and Washington probably could claim to have the most choices (due to their larger student populations) among the AAA schools. So, these three programs could stash away some talented underclassman on their JV team and bring some up after the varsity season.

    But for the rest of the AAA, the best players are going to be on varsity, even if you’re an underclassman. If the other AAA are lucky to have enough players, there will be a JV team. But the smaller schools sometimes just have varsity teams.

    The privates don’t realize how hard it is sometime JUST TO FORM A GIRLS BASKETBALL TEAM in the AAA for the smaller schools. If you happen to have some good players, that’s a nice bonus.

    So for all you SHC fans complaining, please take a step back. You have a great program with a lot of support and beautiful facility. Enjoy the fact that your program is solid and competitive and remember that not all school’s have the same advantages you guys do.

    • GCJ01 says:

      Don L.: AGAIN, your words of wisdom enlighten these private school “geniuses” who continue to cry and complain about why they lost to a team that plays in what they consider a weak league. Looks like we’re not as weak as they thought we were. The good thing about it is when we lose, we own up to it and DON’T MAKE EXCUSES! I wish those in the “stronger” leagues would do the same! The better team won. Simple as that!

  12. B-baller 2 says:

    Does anyone know how SH did yesterday?

  13. Anonymous says:

    Lowell is deep in guards who can handle the ball and also put it in the bucket. They played great defense against a good SH team. Lowell will probably take the AAA crown this year also. The post players also played great. Go Cardinals

  14. B-baller 2 says:

    What happened? Was it due to turnovers or just didn’t play well? Where did we lose it at?

  15. Anonymous says:

    I finally took some time to read the threads and the quantity of drama and manure is absurd. SHCP is a solid program with solid players. Let’s put the “Harrigan” empire behind us. So tired of hearing about what Harrigan was and what Harrigan did. He’s at St. Francis now so lets let Harrigan do Harrigan at his his new school.
    Everyone is so quick to point the finger at Mike Carey — he’s done his fair share of blunders and he may not be the “best” coach SHCP has or will have, but reality is he has a team of girls that are solid players. Some are young and inexperienced, some are injured, some are bratty with bad attitudes and some made the team by fate/luck.
    I like what Don L. and Tired of Phoney posted. Chemistry is key and drama and haters are damage. For those who are die hard blog readers of SHCP, take a step back and ask yourselves “what is the reality with this team?” When the girls step on the floor does Mike Carey tell them to disrespect their team mates and yell at them? Does Mike Carey tell his girls to roll their eye at other team mates? Does Mike Carey ask of fans to talk bad about players that made it on the varsity team? Does Mike Carey ask of parents to misbehave and act bad-mannered? Does Mike Carey tell his girls not to take practice and conditioning seriously?
    I’m so tired of hearing about Mike Carey being the scapegoat. All I read is how so and so didn’t make the team and should have, and “she” would of made an impact. But reality is there are X number of girls on this year’s team that have a “choice” to play for the love of the game or play of themselves, and if the latter true, be prepared of a LONG and PAINFUL season.
    For the girls that didn’t make the team — good luck next year. Perhaps your attitude/chemistry wasn’t a fit. For the naysayers who are dwelling on who should of made the team — move forward. Reality is that player didn’t make the team. IRISH you started off bumpy and you have a long season in front of you. Shake off the bad and regroup — I wish Geanna Summers-Luaulu and Jezabella Cazares a speedy recovery, your team needs you back for leadership, maturity and experience. Ashley Gainer keep up the good work you are the only one rebounding (keep working hard down low). For the newbie’s keep working hard you have big shoes to fill, but it doesn’t mean you can’t improve. Good luck to you all this season. Chemistry is KEY!

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, i agree they are really missing that experience play from Luaula early on. Hope the other player that is out got better from last year, if they are counting on her to step in and be a factor.

    • 2008 shcp says:

      someone child. i know personally,,which Parent n staff who r leavein these comment ,,juit was 4 days ago n everyone still talkin about this . let it go. n just watch the overcome.shcp varsity is a good team, but they could of been better. with them girls they cut. but it’ all good.all u parent on here goin back in fouth like lil kids grow up. it’s all bout the kids. all u parent need to stop talkin about othe parent kids ,that not right.if u want to say somthing , say somthing nice. r u just walk up to the person n let them no how u feel. I no 4 a fact a team is about skills n talent n also chemistry. Lots of ppl is so used of sh havin a great team n bein on top with great coachin n staff. so it’s hard to see how sh is not donig to well. but it’s goin to be ok.Parents just need 2 sit down n watch these girls play the game of basketball n let them have fun. cause all u parent is takin all the fun out these girls games. As a young adult that just graduated class of 2008 from shcp .I wouldn’t be sayin comment on st grow up,n let the kids play This goes out to all the JV n Varsity Girls keep ur heads up n stay strong,& play hard.LET”S GO SH!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Just read this post, very funny how a parent tries to promote her daughter, SHC is waiting for Summers-Lualua to get back and healthy thats about it! Come on just stop all the butt kissing already, everyone knows.

    • GCJ 01 says:

      Interesting intereactions between all of you…..I bet JB had “fun” reading this as he was making sure noone said anything that was against the site’s rules!!!!!

  16. 13asket13all says:

    Anonymous: In my opinion I thought she had a awesome game, dont hate!

  17. Anonymous says:

    Go Irish its only the beginning !

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